After twenty years on the death metal scene Fleshcrawl are still going strong. Their new release "Structures of Death" has everything a death metal fan could want: neck snapping riffs that assault your senses right from the first note and a brilliant production turned in by Martin Schmitt and the band. This album is proof that these veterans of the genre can still grind out metal with the best of them. Sven Gross, the man behind the mic, was kind enough to answer a few questions about the band and their newest release "Structures of Death".You have just added a new bass player, Nico Scheffler. How has that worked out?
Nico is over ten years younger than the rest of the band but we like his personality and attitude. Although the difference in age is pretty big, I would say the way he behaves, acts and lives conforms more to somebody who is nearly the age we are. He is a cool guy and totally fits into the band structure, both on a musically and personal level. He is a very good bass player and he learned the songs very fast.
Give us some insight into this record and the meaning behind the title "Structures of Death".
There are eleven songs of pure death metal mayhem. These are the structures of death (metal). It's a mixture of brutal but still melodic music in the way we like it and we think Swedish old-school death metal should sound like.
When playing together and ultimately recording this album did you feel that you could each express yourself creatively enough?
Yeah for sure, everybody is involved in the songwriting of our records. Somebody more and somebody less, but every time it's a result of Fleshcrawl as a band.
Different groups have unique ways of writing their songs. How do you guys go about writing your music? Is it a collective effort or is it the efforts of one particular member of the band?
Yes it's a collective effort. Everybody who has a good idea or a good riff or maybe a complete song brings it to our rehearsal room. We work it out together, try to form a song: breaks, vocal lines, arrangements, etc - until everybody is 100% satisfied with the result. Otherwise we trash the riff/idea and start all over again
Give us some insight into the album lyrically?
The inspiration for our lyrics are our diseased brains, haha. Of course also horror movies, books, and the newspapers. There are no themes behind the lyrics; we just want to create death metal lyrics in the way they should be.
There are eleven songs with different stories behind but the intention is always the same. Death, blood, guts and gore. There is nothing like a concept album if that's what you mean. There is no deeper story or message which we like to bring to the people. No moralizing crap or political bullshit or stuff like that! Simple but intense and sick death metal lyrics perfectly fitting to the songs.
Unlike your previous releases that were recorded in Sweden, "Structures of Death" was recorded in your hometown of Ulm, Germany. How did this affect the recording process?
Not much, because in the past we already recorded seven albums so far and we know how to work and how a Fleshcrawl release should sound like. Also our engineer Martin Schmitt from Studio Toninfusion was a cool guy so the recording session was pretty relaxed.
The name of the band Fleshcrawl is interesting to say the least and it sounds as if there is a story behind it. Where did this name come from?
There is no big story behind. In the early days we had to change our name two times because of other bands with the same name like Morgöth and Suffocation. So we searched for a new name and our ex-guitar player Stefan Hanus came up with the idea of Fleshcrawl, also it is an instrumental song from the death metal gods of Autopsy.
Every band has its musical influences. What are some of the artists or bands which have greatly influenced you guys and your music?
First of all we are big Autopsy fans. Also, we have great influences from the early Swedish death metal scene: Nihilist, Carnage, Crematory, Entombed, Dismember and so on. And of course the old gods Judas Priest, Slayer and so on.
What is next for Fleshcrawl?
This year we will play several single shows in Germany and for 2008 we hope to play a lot of the big open airs. We are working on trying to fix some cool tour slot, as well! Cheers, Sven and Fleshcrawl.
Czy damy radę wpasować się w panujące dzisiaj trendy tego nie wiem. Mam nadzieję, że tak i płyta zdoła troszkę namieszać i odbije się to echem w środowisku. Mam też nadzieję, że będziemy w stanie pokazać, że scena ma się dobrze i zachęcić innych do tego że warto coś robić mimo tego, że się mieszka daleko od siebie.
Jest old school, bo nie zagraliśmy ani jednego oryginalnego dźwięku, kawałki są krótkie, jest w nich mnóstwo thrashu i punka, szczypta death metalu – to dla wielu będzie właśnie przepisem na grindcore, zmieniają się tylko proporcje. Nie boli nas ta łata, nie chce nam się też szukać innej.
Może dzięki uwielbieniu Dissection jest na Heading Below więcej melodii? Może za sprawą Testimony of Ancients znalazły się klawiszowe podkłady? Być może dlatego, że kochamy Autopsy jest więcej tłustych zwolnień? Jakoś tak to wszystko naturalnie przyszło.